Samsung has fired its latest riposte to rival Apple with the launch of a new generation of smartphones and a budding mobile payments ecosystem under the Samsung Pay banner.
The Korean technology giant claims Samsung Pay will be compatible with more locations than any competing offering in a single application, including support for contactless and mag-stripe terminals. It will launch on the new Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 edge in the United States during the second half of this year.
Much like Apple, Samsung Pay will be protected by fingerprint scanning courtesy of Samsung Knox, and advanced tokenisation from the major card schemes. It also comes equipped with anti-virus malware protection from IntelSecurity.
The embedded Secure Element works with both Near Field Communication (NFC) and Magnetic Secure Transmission (MST) technology to make it device, merchant and card issuer agnostic, says the company. The MST application follows from Samsung's recent acquisition of LoopPay, enabling the phone to work on terminals equipped with a basic swipe reader.
As with Apple Pay, Samsung has rounded up support from Visa, American Express and MasterCard, for the launch alongside a fleet of top US banks, including Chase, Citi, Bank of America and US Bank.
The Samsung S6 is also providing the platform for a new mobile wallet developed by Norway's Eika Kredittbank in collaborations with Nets and Oberthur Technologies. The Eika Group, which is owned by 75 local banks, says it will launch its mobile wallet with seven local banks in June.